My Overwhelming To-Do List

April 16, 2010 Aimee White

This overwhelming to-do list makes me focus on everything I am not doing. But when I notice what I do accomplish, it puts life back into perspective.

Do you ever feel like you have taken on so much in your life that there is just not enough time in the day to do it all? Lately, I am constantly behind on assignments. Every time I turn a corner I see half-finished projects, things needing to get in the mail, "overdue" pop-ups on my computer, etc. I have so much to do, yet I am sitting here not even sure where I should start and feel like I am just wasting valuable time.

Because I do not like letting people down (a lot of my anxiety revolves around people pleasing), owing things to people, being late on promises, and generally feeling overwhelmed has the potential for anxiety to creep in and shut me down entirely.The hard part is I am supposed to take it easy since I am under threat of a

The hard part is I am supposed to take it easy since I am under threat of a miscarriage. I want to literally hammer away at some of the things on my list, but I know I can't push myself too hard.

What I'm Doing That's Not on My Overwhelming To-Do List

When I end the day feeling like I have accomplished nothing, it really makes me feel worthless. I focus so much on what I haven't gotten done, but for right now in these few minutes, I am going to focus on what I do get done. In a normal day I'll usually:

  • change at least 4 diapers
  • make 3 meals incorporating fruits and veggies if I can sneak them in well enough
  • dress a toddler multiple times as she goes through clothes like she lives in a juice bar
  • bathe said toddler (sometimes more than once like when she "culured" all over herself with black permanent marker)
  • wipe down the kitchen table and counters again because the cat just walked across it with muddy little paw prints. Gotta love spring.
  • close cabinets toddler can now reach and replace everything she pulled onto the floor back to where they go (yes we baby proof but she is a magician these days)
  • fill the cat and dogs' food and water bowls
  • take the garbage to the street
  • put a load of laundry in the washer and possibly remember to switch it to the dryer
  • put in a load of laundry in the washer that I previously didn't remember to switch over and now smells moldy. Yuck.
  • make the bed...ok I guess I am pushing it, that's not a normal daily thing
  • vacuum
  • do dishes and empty the dishwasher (including taking a stroll in the backyard since our dog likes to sneak any dishes he can out there)

todoThis is all aside from the 6 hours a day I am supposed to get in for my job, my online career via a store where orders need to be filled, blogging obligations, websites to create, and photography pictures people are waiting on.

I pride myself on being a professional. I try to be the best at what I do, no matter in what category or role that may be in. But it's obvious from this list that my family is my number one priority. And that puts everything into perspective.

I like what this woman said:

My intent today is not to get down on myself for not completing a month's worth of things in one day. I tend to put way too many things on my to-do list and then not feel good about what I accomplish in one day.

So, I will put a big check mark by each thing I complete today. Plus, I will try hard not to compare myself or what I get done with what I imagine others are getting done today. I think this will be hard to do, but not impossible.

What do you do when things get overwhelming?

APA Reference
White, A. (2010, April 16). My Overwhelming To-Do List, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 21 from

Author: Aimee White

April, 19 2010 at 2:13 am

I agree with you Aimee, it's a nice to know that I am not alone and we are not alone. Take ccare.

April, 18 2010 at 4:31 pm

When I get overstressed I cave in and just do nothing because everything is overwhelming to me and I can't take it. I know that's not the way to handle it but that's what happens.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Aimee White
April, 18 2010 at 4:52 pm

Hey John, I am the EXACT same way. I am glad to know I am not the only one :)

April, 16 2010 at 11:49 pm

women today do everything themselves! it would never have occurred to grandma that she should paint her own kitchen in addition to working and doing most or all household chores themself! i know times have changed but that is ridiculous. if you have a significant other do they not also live there? mine is basically clueless but i know i tend to self-impose a lot of "dirt work" because he is so "busy". i'd be busy too if i could get someone else to do everything! if i do not sit down once in awhile i just get crazy! i know noone else will do it but so what? my house is a mess because i value my sanity.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Aimee White
April, 17 2010 at 3:51 am

Thanks for your comment Judith. I do have a hubby and when he is home he does 99% of the cleaning. In fact I have been fortunate enough to never clean a shower or toilet in the 7 years we have been married. Unfortunately he travels a lot for work and has been gone all week so things are easier when he is around. He is traveling a lot lately so that I can hopefully quit my job when/if this next baby comes which will be extremely helpful. So we are sacrificing now for a payout later.

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